It’s Friday. Flyaspora Friday here at theHotness and we thought we’d titillate your senses with a little fine art. I love these two portraits because they reappropriate what is considered classical, high art and dips them low in a point a view and representation that goes against the grain yet supports the woman I see in the mirror every day. Awol Erizku’s “Girl With A Bamboo Earring” reimagines Johannes Vermeer’s famous “Girl with a Pearl Earring” (c. 1665).
Below, Peter Lippmann shot this photo as part of last year’s campaign for Christian Louboutin. This is his take on Marie-Guilleme Benoit’s “Portrait d’une Negresse” (c. 1800). What I love about Lippmann’s shot is that unlike the original where the Negresse, who happened to be a former slave is looking away, probably feeling uncomfortable being painted by a white French woman only six years post slavery and maybe even in shame for having to expose her breast especially within the context of slavery’s notorious era of rape, the model featured in the Loub campaign controls the gaze and looks at her admirers in the eye as if to say, “Yea I’m foine and yes, my body is tight. What!” She not only owns that fly Louboutin boot in her hand, but she owns the shot as well.
I know it’s sometimes hard, especially if you depend on TV and mainstream mags, to readily see your honey brown beauty, but it’s up to us to reassert ourselves in society’s abyss of pale, blond highness. Robert Bresson, a French filmmaker once declared: “Make visible what, without you, might perhaps never have been seen.” We are fly, we are pretty and we are masterpieces too. See yourself like that, become your own Mona Lisa and be your own beautiful.